Bahamas rescue: Coast Guard saves 3 who were stranded on uninhabited island for 33 days

They survived on conch shells and rats, officials said.

ByMeredith Deliso ABCNews logo
Wednesday, February 10, 2021
Coast Guard rescues 3 stranded on uninhabited island in Bahamas
US Coast Guard rescues three people stranded on an uninhabited island in the Bahamas for 33 days.

MIAMI -- Three people believed to be stranded on an uninhabited island in the Bahamas for over 30 days, surviving on conch shells and rats, were rescued Tuesday, the U.S. Coast Guard said.

The Cuban nationals had been reportedly stranded on Anguilla Cay for 33 days, officials said.

A U.S. Coast Guard Clearwater helicopter hoisted the two men and woman off the island. The rescue took about 30 minutes, Mike Allert, the aircraft commander on the helicopter, told ABC News.

The three were then brought to the Lower Keys Medical Center in Key West, Florida, with no reported injuries, officials said. They did show signs of dehydration and fatigue, Allert said, though he noted that their conditions were good considering how long they were stranded.

They were in dire straits due to a lack of fresh water on the island, Allert said.

A Coast Guard crew spotted the three people during a routine patrol of the area on Monday, but the rescue was delayed until Tuesday due to the weather, Allert said. Officials announced shortly before 6 p.m. ET that the rescue was successful.

The U.S. Coast Guard Southeast also shared a video on social media of a Miami aircrew dropping food, water and a radio to the stranded people the day before the rescue.

It is unclear how they ended up on the island, Allert said.

ABC News' Henderson Hewes and Rachel Katz contributed to this report.